Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Day One-Hundred-Eighty-Five, Shelter From the Storm

Find me in a coffee shop/cafe in Chatom, Alabama.  Cassanova's Hideaway.  Or Love Grotto or Passion Nook.  I know it is something like that.  It sounds like a different sort of shop altogether but it is not such a bad place.  It offers some big city sophistication to a town that needs all it can get.

I had the cheesecake, thank-you very much.  It was a man-sized serving.  And more than I needed, having already dined.  I had the meatloaf special.  With mustard greens and mashed potatoes and a small piece of not-so-good cake.

So why are you eating again, you wonder.  I assure you, it's not gluttony.  It's cowardice.  It's raining outside and I'm rather hoping it will stop.  I hiked twelve long miles to make it this far.  I tell you, it is nippy out there.  And wet and grey with flurries of snow or very very fluffy rain.

I was up at four-thirty.  I might have been off by six.  But I was waiting for the rain to thin so I could take down my tent.  But it still got packed wet.  Tonight it will be some degrees below freezing.  And it will ice over and my zippers will lock and I will be there until spring.  No sense in me being soggy as well.  I believe I'll have some more coffee.


And that's about as far as I got.  It was still pissing down.  And so it went until a good ten minutes after I checked into a motel.  I am not making fantastic progress this month.  My whole trip's been a bit slow.  I am testing a theory.  I believe this can be done without experiencing hardship.

Not by me, certainly.  But then I am hardship prone.  I'm a gentle creature.  Two days in the rain and I turn into one great prune.  My calluses get all waterlogged.  I lose my baritone voice.  My underpants abrade my bottom.  My colour starts to fade.

So I'm all sponged off.  I dried all my gear.  What I didn't do is sleep.  And I've still got some suffering to endure.  It is getting to be awfully cold.  And I'm a bit cash poor.  I may lose a pound or two before December.  As hardships go, hunger is the worst.  But only when you're not soaking wet.

It'll be in the twenties the next three days.  I intend to survive.  But be prepared to hear me gripe.  You may dismiss it as whining.  But you'll be wrong.  I'm better than that.  I've got this down to a science.

But at what cost?  I've lost a toenail.  It may or may not grow back.  My feet have grown a size and a half.  My beard is turning white.  I can no longer read the very fine print.  My heart has developed a crack.

I like the idea of being eaten by a gator.  I mean the drama, the poetry.  The terror and pain I could live without.  At least I think so.  I've never tried.

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1 comment:

  1. You are getting closer to the Gulf! Soon you shall have the warm sun on your back and soft sand between your toes! Press on....